Insurance salesman finds life in British Army
April 13, 2007
Insurance salesman finds life in British Army

Six years ago an insurance salesman gave up his desk job in search of adventure and new worlds, he found it in the British Army.

Today Sergeant Calberth Charles is now a highly trained physio-therapist at the internationally acclaimed Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre in Epsom, Surrey, England.{{more}}

There, he works along with and treats soldiers suffering with injuries ranging from broken ankles to serious spine and head injuries.

Charles said the move from behind a desk to becoming a rehab specialist came easy to him since he was always the physical type.

“I was always involved in sports” he said, “I represented St. Vincent and the Grenadines in youth football and I am still involved in cricket and football in the UK, so being fit is easy for me, being a requirement for the job that I do.”

A recent news release by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has indicated that a high level of racism exists in the military and that minorities do not have the same chance of being promoted to higher ranks, but Charles said that he has not seen racism in his department, neither has he ever been a victim of racism.

Sergeant Calbert Charles (left second last row) with co-workers based at the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre in Surrey, England. He is one of the top physiotherapists at the facility.

“They (the British Military) have stamped down on things like that, there are equal opportunities out there, they treat us the same way or better. Of course there are hard feelings when a person, whether black or white, gets promoted.

“The Vincentians in the British Army are so hard working that most of them are well ahead of promotion,” he went on to add, “most people love working along with the Vincentians, because they know that the job will be done to the best.”

Charles said that there is a strong bond among Vincentians serving in the British military, and the soldiers use every opportunity to meet or call each other when they are in the UK or stationed elsewhere. He is thankful that to date he has not treated any soldier from his homeland.

The married father of a teenaged daughter is entering his sixth year in the service, and has no regrets in the change of profession and the direction that his career is heading. He just concluded a new course in physiotherapy that earned him another degree, and he intends to go all the way in the army and see where it takes him.

He is encouraging young men and women to take advantage of the opportunity to build a career, and see the world in the process.